ASUU: Union Rejects Federal Government’s offer, Gives Reasons

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has revealed its reasons for rejecting the Federal Government’s proposed salaries for its members.

The President of ASUU, Emmanuel Osodoke made this known in a press statement titled ‘Why ASUU rejects government’s award of salary’ issued on Thursday.

The statement comes after the meeting between the Federal Government and the union on Tuesday ended in an impasse.

The president in the statement reiterated the principles guiding the renegotiation terms the government and the union agreed on March 16, 2017, including academic freedom, restoration of Nigerian universities, and the reversal of the decay in the Nigerian University System, among others.

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“Reversal of the decay in the Nigerian University System, in order to reposition it for its responsibilities in national development; Reversal of the brain drain, not only by enhancing the remuneration of academic staff but also by disengaging them from the encumbrance of a unified civil service wage structure; Restoration of Nigerian Universities, through immediate, massive and sustained financial intervention; and Ensuring genuine university autonomy and academic freedom.”

He noted that the rejection of the federal government salary package came after collective bargaining, doubting that the government’s cared about what becomes of public universities in years to come.

“Rejecting a salary package arrived at through collective bargaining is a repudiation of government’s pronouncements on reversing “brain drain”.

“It is common knowledge that more now than in the 1980s and 1990s, Nigerian scholars, especially in scarce areas like science and medicine, are migrating in droves to Europe, America and many parts of Africa such as South Africa, Rwanda, and Ghana with a supportive environment to ply their trades as well as competitive reward systems for intellectual efforts.

“Does the Nigerian government care about what becomes of public universities in another five or ten years if this trend continues?” he explained.

Osodeke further said the ongoing industrial action by ASUU is prolonged due to the indifference on the part of the government.

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